Ipad Meanderings

Because the task of going through all those ipad apps we learned in our workshop seems as daunting as convincing the American midwest that there were no weapons of mass destruction, I decided to troll the web for some handy tips or brilliant ideas using the ipad. Keying such efficient search phrases such as “the most awesome way to use the ipad ever” or  “best ways to use your ipad” (my librarian self seems to be on vacation and while she is away my teenage brain seems to have taken over) I came across only a couple of good tips. A lot of the stuff mentioned we already know, or I have already covered, which warms the cockles of my analog heart as it means that we are on the right track.

I like being on the right track.

However, there were a couple of things I didn’t know and I’m not ashamed to admit it. As well, I cam e across a couple of good sites that would be worth checking out.

From Gigaom.com came this interesting tip about Safari:

Screenshot taken from website- this is not my lovely work but Gigaoms…
why re-invent the wheel, I ask?

As well as this one about finding text in a website:

Thanks Mr. Geoffrey Getz!

This one took me a minute to figure as I was already on the page I wanted. The trick is to type the word you want in the search box and then the “On this page” option appears. Very handy indeed!

Another site I stumbled upon was EmergingEdTech which has a great blog as well as this list of Free Productivity Resources for Educators .

That is all for today as I really need to get another cup of coffee and do some old school book cataloguing…

Proof of insanity in two examples: Installing the Eprint Bookmarklet for Safari and Evernote

“Insanity is defined as repeating the same behavior and expecting a different result.”- Einstein

Sometimes I get stuck on a tiny little detail. I can’t find the solution and all my grand plans grind to a halt as I hit the same buttons over and over again, hoping that it was just a fluke that it didn’t work the first ten times. Mr. Einstein would not approve.

So the first time I tried to install the Eprint bookmarklet I failed miserably. Why? Because, despite the totally arcane instructions (see below) I couldn’t figure out how to move my cursor in the URL field. So Kept on tapping the URL wanting to scroll and it wouldn’t. It finally took me accidentally holding my finger down long enough for the magnifying glass to show up, and then moving my finger in shock at its sudden appearance to realise this is how you move your cursor in Safari on the ipad.

Yes. I know. Duh.

This is how it looks like:

Here are the directions for the bookmarklet. If you go into Eprint, click on settings, then scroll to the bottom. You should find them there. I did have to write them down however as when you begin the process in Safari, it doesn’t allow you to switch screens for a moment to check them. Once I figured out how to move the cursor so that I could remove the Http:// in the URL it was very easy. And now I can easily print pages of the web! (this is helpful if you are using the SIS system on the web and want to print out a class list, or if you have accessed a google doc or a map or a recipe or….well, the possibilities are endless.

So first proof of insanity. Am I cured yet?

Second proof: installing Evernote on my desktop. I know, I know. This is an ipad blog. but one of the mysteries of Evernote, which everybody seems to speak highly of, and of which I find clunky and non-intuitive, is that you can’t actually tag anything on the ipad. You can VIEW stuff, but you can’t save it on Evernote. I find this ridiculous. They should really have an Evernote. bookmarklet.

Maybe they do and I haven’t looked hard enough?

But I digress. I wanted to tag some of the articles i have been receiving via my Google Alert for the keywords “Ipads in schools” and “Ipads in education” and share them with you (which I will still do, I promise.) But I couldn’t find the little Evernote elephant icon in my browser’s toolbar. So I downloaded it from the website, restarted Firefox and still no icon. So I did it again. And again. Until I was about to start lobbing things at my computer. I finally gave up and did something else. It wasn’t until I began this blog post did I finally spy the elephant. And no, it wasn’t on my browser’s toolbar but on my desktop toolbar!

I kind of hate Evernote more now.

If you are having better luck with this app, please let me know. So far, as you can probably read, I’m not loving it.

Bookmarking on the ipad and how to quit apps and save your ipad battery

This might have been obvious for anyone who isn’t me, but I had to actually look this up. The issue came up when I asked the seventh graders to bookmark the library site and realised I had no idea how to do it on the ipad. It turns out the answer was right in front of me:

1.Click on the framed arrow on the left side of the URL.:

2. Click on “Add Bookmark” (duh!). If you want to put it in a folder, click the open book icon right beside the boxed arrow:

3. Click on Edit.
4.Click on New folder.
5. Type in the name of your folder.
6. Go back to your bookmarks and drag the ones you would like in your folder. Or if you are smarter than me. Do the folder first and then when you are browsing, stick them in the folder as you add them!

And I think will probably reduce the chances of your ipad freezing up. Beth has shown me this before, but my brain being the sieve that it is, I had to look up how to do it again. It turns out that ALL my apps were open when I did this. Hmmm, that must be why my battery seems to have sprung a leak…

1. Double click the centre ipad button
2. Press on an app you would like to close.
3. All the apps will go wiggly and a minus sign will appear on each app:

4. click on the minus sign to close the app.
5. To finish, click the centre button again.

Stuff I’ve used the ipad for this week:

  • To roam around the library and change students’ library catalogue passwords (much easier than yelling for them to come to my desktop- they couldn’t escape).
  • Making a QR Code Scavenger Hunt for orientation! (But I will write a whole post about this when I’m done…)

Printing From Your Ipad and a Grey Safari Screen

I had two questions at lunch today from a poor student who could no longer access the internet because her safari screen had greyed out and wouldn’t let her do anything. After googling the helpful ipadforums, I found the answer.

When your Safari screen greys out on your computer:

  • Reset it by pressing the on/off button and the ipad button in the centre until you see the apple icon. It will restart it and it should work when you open Safari again. It did for the student!
Why does it do that? Who knows, but it does feel like the ipad version of when a computer freezes up ( a site takes too long to load, etc.) Perhaps our IT guru could weigh in?
The second question was more difficult and required me laying down some cash. 
How do you print from your ipad?
Hmmm. This is complicated as it depends on what kind of printer you have. If you are lucky enough to have an airprint supported printer (which we are not), then you are good to go. However, we at the school are not that lucky. I found this very helpful article on printing on the ipad from Macworld that gave some options for printing without airprint. I, of course, chose the cheapest, eprint at a whopping 3$, my first app purchase.
I downloaded it and opened it- it looked like this:
Then I went to the Add a printer icon and the library printer was already listed. I clicked on it and made it my default. 
Then I returned to main menu and clicked on settings, where I made sure the default paper size was letter, created a borderless extension area.
Then I opened my dropbox to find a document to test it out on. To connect the document with the printer I had to star it and store it in my favourites. I then clicked on the framed arrow on the right hand side and it gave me the option to print.

I clicked on print settings, made sure I was only printing the first page, made sure it was only printing the body and voilĂ ! My document was printed!

Hope this helps!